Boy Scouts of America is changing its name.  

Beginning in February the 114-year-old organization, launched to develop skills and character in boys and young men, will be known as Scouting America.

The name change reflects the “organization’s ongoing commitment to welcome every youth and family in America to experience the benefits of scouting,” the group said Tuesday in announcing the name change.

“Though our name will be new, our mission remains unchanged: we are committed to teaching young people to be prepared—for life,” Roger A. Krone, president and chief executive officer of the organization, said. “This will be a simple but very important evolution as we seek to ensure that everyone feels welcome in scouting.”  

The name change comes about five years after Boy Scouts of America began accepting girls into the program.  

Scouting America, formerly Boy Scouts of America, “currently serves more than 176,000 girls and young women across all programs, including over 6,000 who have earned the rank of Eagle Scout,” the organization said.  

Traditionally, younger boys first became Cub Scouts before graduating to Boy Scouts, while girls became Brownies before graduating to Girl Scouts.

Boy Scouts began allowing openly gay youth to participate in 2013, then openly gay leaders in 2015.  

“Scouting America provides a welcoming, safe environment where youth can become the best version of themselves by learning from and respecting each other,” Krone said in Tuesday’s statement. “I encourage everyone to join us and experience the benefits of scouting.”   

The rebranding of the Boy Scouts to Scouting America follows the organization’s challenges in participation during and following the COVID-19 pandemic.  

“I hope that men who benefited from the Boy Scouts in their childhood will now recognize that the organization they loved has ceased to exist,” Jay Richards, director of the Richard and Helen DeVos Center for Life, Religion, and Family at The Heritage Foundation, told The Daily Signal on Wednesday. (Heritage founded The Daily Signal in 2014.)

“The Boy Scouts have a long and proud history, but the organization lost its way 20 years ago when it surrendered to sexual revolutionaries,” Richards said. “No doubt the leaders who made that compromise thought they were saving the organization. Instead, they set it on a pathway to destruction. That pathway led, inevitably, to this moment, where even the difference between female and male, girl and boy, must be dissolved.”

In 2021, The Associated Press reported that membership in Boy Scouts of America programs fell from 1.9 million in 2019 to 1.1 million in 2020 and continued to fall in 2021. Today, according to the group’s website, the scouting organization has over 1 million members ranging in age from 5 to 21.  

Scouting America is intentionally branding itself as an organization for all youth. By contrast, Girl Scouts of the USA maintains that although its organization is aimed at girls, it allows transgender youth to participate.  

In 2018, a year after the Boy Scouts began admitting girls, the Girl Scouts filed a lawsuit claiming the Boy Scouts was damaging its recruiting efforts and had created branding confusion. The case ultimately ended in a settlement.  

The rebranding for the Boy Scouts comes as more than 130 million Americans have participated in the organization’s programs since its founding in 1910.  

This report was updated within 24 hours of publication to include the comments from Jay Richards.